Books LIVE Community Sign up

Login to BooksLIVE

Forgotten password?

Forgotten your password?

Enter your username or email address and we'll send you reset instructions

Books LIVE


Right! That's a wrap of our #ManBooker2014 coverage. Congratulations to Richard Flanagan

Join Pumla Gobodo-Madikizela and Care in Context Contributors for a Launch at The Book Lounge

Care in Context: Transnational gender perspectivesThe Book Lounge and HSRC Press cordially invite you to the launch of Care in Context: Transnational gender perspectives edited by Vasu Reddy, Stephan Meyer, Tamara Shefer and Thenjiwe Meyiwa.

Pumla Gobodo-Madikizela, who wrote the forward to the book, will deliver the keynote address, after which the Cape Town-based authors will discuss their contributions.

The launch takes place on Wednesday, 5 November, and starts at 5:30 for 6 PM. Refreshments will be served.

See you there!

Event Details

  • Date: Wednesday, 5 November 2014
  • Time: 5:30 for 6:00 PM
  • Venue: The Book Lounge,
    71 Roeland Street
    Cape Town | Map
  • Guest Speaker: Pumla Gobodo-Madikizela
  • Refreshments: Wine and snacks
  • RSVP:, 021 462 2425

Book Details

Catch the Launch of A Flawed Freedom: Rethinking Southern African Liberation by John Saul in Canada

A Flawed Freedom: Rethinking Southern African LiberationThe Institute of African Studies at Carleton University and Octopus Books would like to invite you to the launch of A Flawed Freedom: Rethinking Southern African Liberation by John Saul.

Saul will be in conversation with Blair Rutherford, Director of Institute of African Studies.

The launch will be held at Octopus Books Centretown on Sunday, 5 November, at 7 PM.

Catch it if you can!

Event Details

  • Date: Sunday, 5 November 2014
  • Time: 7 PM
  • Venue: Octopus Books Centretown
    2nd Floor
    251 Bank Street
  • Guest Speaker: Blair Rutherford

Book Details

Join Aziz Pahad for the Launch of Insurgent Diplomat: Civil Talks or Civil War? at Centre for the Book

Insurgent Diplomat: Civil talks or civil war?The Centre for Conflict Resolution (CCR) invites you to the launch of Insurgent Diplomat: Civil Talks or Civil War? by Aziz Pahad. The launch will take the form of a public dialogue with professors Willem Esterhuyse and Chris Landsberg.

The discussion will take place on Tuesday, 4 November, from 5:30 to 7 PM at the Centre for the Book in Cape Town.

Pahad will speak to Landsberg, the chair of African Diplomacy and Foreign Policy at the South African Research Chairs Initiative (SARChI), and Esterhuyse, an honorary professor at the Thabo Mbeki African Leadership Institute.

Don’t miss it!

Event Details

Book Details

The Generosity, the Lessons, the Issues: Mervyn Sloman Reflects on the 2014 Open Book Festival

Mervyn Sloman, owner of The Book Lounge and director of the Open Book Festival, has had some time to gather his thoughts after this year’s event, and reflects on the highs and lows of Open Book 2014.

The Other Side of SilenceThe Chicken ThiefJeff in Venice, Death in VaranasiTransformationsMemoirs of a Born Free

Magician's EndUnimportanceGood Morning, Mr MandelaLondon – Cape Town – JoburgAn Unnecessary Woman

There were plenty of highlights this year, including the generosity shown by international authors Geoff Dyer and Raymond E Feist to their less famous counterparts – as well as local luminaries Fiona Leonard and Zukiswa Wanner, who stepped in to cover the absent Taiye Selasi – and surprise package Rabih Alameddine, who became the darling of the festival, and was longlisted for the USA’s National Book Award while he was in Cape Town (it has since been shortlisted, and Books LIVE wishes Alameddine the best of luck).

However, Sloman is at pains to flag a couple of issues that cropped up as well.

The first was raised in a session entitled Writer’s Rage, featuring Wanner and Thando Mgqolozana, which you can listen to in full as a podcast here. In that session, Mgqolozana said he believed writers should be paid, or at least compensated for their time, when appearing at literary festivals, and stated that he was not prepared to appear in future without some form of payment.

Sloman responds by saying “Open Book is not a rich festival”, and that he believes the event provides writers with the opportunity to interact with their readers and promote their work, but adding that he respects Mgqolozana’s opinion.

I would dearly love to pay writers to participate in Open Book, but at this point in our development it’s just not feasible. And while I respect Thando’s point, I believe that Open Book is a good thing for South African writers, despite our inability to offer payment for their participation. The festival provides opportunities for South African writers to engage with potential readers, to promote their books and to meet and engage with their writing peers both from South Africa and elsewhere. In a country such as ours, in which such a low proportion of the population devote significant leisure time to reading books, I believe festivals such as Open Book can play a crucial role in building a culture of reading. Incidentally this is a responsibility we take seriously throughout the year, not just for the five days of the festival itself. It is of course each writer’s choice as to whether they choose to participate in Open Book given the lack of payment and if Thando decides not to accept invitations from us until such time as we can afford to pay him, then I will certainly respect that decision.

Sloman also touches on Wanner’s concerns about the festival not spreading wide enough, into Khayelitsha, for example, saying that although the festival gives away a large number of tickets for free, “our efforts in this regard are insufficient”.

He also addresses the Malaika wa Azania incident. Wa Azania, author of Memoirs of a Born Free: Reflections on the Rainbow Nation, was reportedly disguisted when she learnt that people were paying R40 for a ticket, and subsequently did not materialise for her second event, and did not answer her cellphone.

Open Book Facebook gallery


Book details

Don't Miss the Annual Stellenberg Gardens Open Day in Cape Town

Stellenberg Open Day

Stellenberg: The Story of a GardenThe Stellenberg Gardens, established in the 18th century and privately owned, is opened to the public once every year. This year the open days will be on Saturday, 1 November, and Sunday, 2 November from 9:30 AM to 5:30 PM. Tea in the garden will be available for R25.

Stellenberg: The Story of a Garden by Franchesca Watson and Laurian Brown, with illustrations by Alain Proust, will be on sale during these two days.

Don’t miss it!

Event Details

  • Date: Saturday, 1 November 2014 and Sunday, 2 November 2014
  • Time: 9:30 AM to 5:30 PM
  • Venue: Stellenberg Gardens
    Oak Avenue
    Cape Town | Map
  • Cover charge: R50
  • Refreshments: Garden Tea for R25
  • RSVP: Doreen Daubermann, 021 761 2948

Book Details

Kom kuier saam met Chanette Paul by die bekendstelling van Ewebeeld in Pinelands

EwebeeldLAPA Uitgewers nooi jou graag na die bekendstelling van Ewebeeld deur Chanette Paul.

Die geleentheid sal plaasvind by die Suid-Afrikaanse Sentrum vir Nederlands en Vlaandere (SASNEV) in Pinelands op Maandag, 6 Oktober 2014 om 18:00.

Paul sal ook gesels oor haar onlangse toer na Nederland en België. Wyn en vingerhappies sal bedien word.

Moet dit nie misloop nie!